PREFACE THE present edition of the Letters of Horace Walpole is based upon that,of Peter Cunningham (first published in nine volumes octavo in 1857). The latest issue (1891) of Cunningham's edition contains 2,654 letters1, representing 95 correspondents; the present edition contains 3,061 letters, representing 150 correspondents2. Of the 407 letters not included in Cunningham's edition, 111 are now printed for the first time8. The letters to Sir Horace Mann (823 in number, which include eleven now printed for the first time) have been collated with the original MS. in the possession of Earl Waldegrave at Chewton Priory. The MS. of these letters (which is contained in six folio volumes) consists of transcripts (partly in the handwriting of Horace Walpole, partly in that of his secretary, Thomas Kirgate) of the original letters. The annotations throughout, and the dates, are in Horace Walpole's own hand. The original letters sent to Mann were returned periodically to Horace Walpole at his own request during Mann's lifetime (see, for instance, letters to Mann of Sept. 17, 1778, No. 1,892 in the present edition; of May 9, 1779, No. 1,941; and of March 30, 1784, No. 2,473). These originals appear to have been destroyed by Walpole after the existing transcripts had 1 The total number of letters is 2 Exclusive of sundry unidentified 2,665, but among them are included correspondents, eight letters written by Bichard s The bulk of .the remainder have West, one by Edward Walpole, and been privately printed, and are now two by Con-way. for the first time published.